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Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research

Print version ISSN 0100-879XOn-line version ISSN 1414-431X


WALZ, R. et al. Differential role of entorhinal and hippocampal nerve growth factor in short- and long-term memory modulation. Braz J Med Biol Res [online]. 2005, vol.38, n.1, pp.55-58. ISSN 0100-879X.

We studied the effects of infusion of nerve growth factor (NGF) into the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex of male Wistar rats (250-300 g, N = 11-13 per group) on inhibitory avoidance retention. In order to evaluate the modulation of entorhinal and hippocampal NGF in short- and long-term memory, animals were implanted with cannulae in the CA1 area of the dorsal hippocampus or entorhinal cortex and trained in one-trial step-down inhibitory avoidance (foot shock, 0.4 mA). Retention tests were carried out 1.5 h or 24 h after training to measure short- and long-term memory, respectively. Immediately after training, rats received 5 µl NGF (0.05, 0.5 or 5.0 ng) or saline per side into the CA1 area and entorhinal cortex. The correct position of the cannulae was confirmed by histological analysis. The highest dose of NGF (5.0 ng) into the hippocampus blocked short-term memory (P < 0.05), whereas the doses of 0.5 (P < 0.05) and 5.0 ng (P < 0.01) NGF enhanced long-term memory. NGF administration into the entorhinal cortex improved long-term memory at the dose of 5.0 ng (P < 0.05) and did not alter short-term memory. Taken as a whole, our results suggest a differential modulation by entorhinal and hippocampal NGF of short- and long-term memory.

Keywords : Nerve growth factor; Hippocampus; Entorhinal cortex; Short- and long-term memory; Inhibitory avoidance; Rat.

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